Posts Tagged ‘ digital video camera ’

2.4 Ghz Wireless Hidden Camera

Monday, October 3rd, 2011

Sometimes cameras need to be placed in areas where wiring would obviously give away the fact that the camera is hidden.  When this is the case a 2.4 Ghz wireless hidden camera is the perfect solution for the job.

Unless a camera has its own “on-board” Digital Video Recorder or DVR, it will need a video transmission cable, commonly RG59.  However a 2.4 Ghz wireless hidden camera can eliminate the need for cables by sending the video transmission signal via radio waves.

It sends the radio waves using an on-board transmitter and antenna that use the 2.4 Ghz technology.  This is the same technology that is often used by many land-line based wireless telephones.

The 2.4 Ghz technology offers powerful and clear transmissions and is an excellent choice for wireless technology for digital video cameras.  However, this type of wireless communication is also known as Line Of Sight or LOS technology.  LOS refers to the method by which it transmits and receives and the fact that impeding objects can affect the transmission be reducing the maximum range of the camera.

LOS means that the maximum transmission range of the signal is as stated as long as the camera antenna and receiver antenna have a direct, unimpeded distance between them.  Also, the physical makeup of the object(s) will also contribute to determining how much the range may be reduced.  Trees, walls, glass, buildings, and other objects that are between the camera and the receiver all have an effect of reducing the manufacturers’ stated LOS range.

It’s important to understand this concept because if you know that the distance between where you want to mount your camera and where your receiver is, is 500 feet and your camera is rated for 500 feet but there are objects like trees and a couple of walls between the two, it is likely that the range will be reduced and the receiver may not be able to receive the signal.   If this is the case, it may be beneficial to try using a camera with a 1,000 foot range instead.

Security Camera King has many different types of 2.4 Ghz wireless hidden cameras available for purchase.  Some are designed to work with a DVR and others may just be designed to transmit to a monitor (a baby monitor is a good example of this).  The following list is a partial list of some of the 2.4 Ghz wireless cameras we have available for purchase:

  • Product# HC-BTNCM-G — Black and white hi resolution button camera*
  • Product# HC-SCREW-G — Black and white screw camera
  • Product# HC-BBMNT-GC — Toy dog baby monitor
  • Product# HC-MOTIOD-G — PIR Motion Detector
  • Product# HC-WALLC1-G — Black and white wall clock
  • Product# HC-EXITS-G — Black and white Exit sign
  • Product# HC-DSKSP-G — Desktop speakers
  • Product# HC-VNTMR-G — Vanity mirror with Touch Activation
  • Product# HC-CBNDT-G — Carbon Monoxide Detector
  • Product# HC-WNDTN-G — Black and white wind tunnel camera
  • Product# HC-ALARC-G — Black and white Alarm clock camera
  • Product# HC-CORPH-G — Cordless House phone camera
  • Product# HC-BMBOX-G — Black and white CD/Boombox camera
  • Product# HC-ANMCK-G — Black and white suspended animation clock camera
  • Product# HC-CBNDT-GC — Carbon monoxide detector
  • Product# HC-ELCBX-G — Electrical utility box camera
  • Product# HC-ARWCK-G — Air Wick Air Freshener Camera
  • Product# HC-TISSU-G — Black and white tissue box camera

*Most of the cameras above that are listed as “Black and White” are also available in a “Color” version as well.

As you can see, a 2.4 Ghz wireless hidden camera can be disguised in many ways.  The above list is only a partial list; we have even more cameras to offer than this.

One last word of caution.  Each state has different laws governing the use of cameras and especially audio recorders without the subject’s knowledge.  Make sure you confirm you state’s laws before attempting to record anyone covertly.  This doesn’t mean that you can’t record improper or criminal activity but the planned, deliberate, covert recording may require special concessions on the part of the person recording.

If you are interested in purchasing one of these cameras or have any questions at all, our security experts in our support team will be glad to help you.  To contact one of our security specialists you can use the on-line “Live Chat” feature or telephone 866-573-8878 Monday through Friday from 9AM to 6PM EST.


Covert Security Hidden Camera

Monday, October 3rd, 2011

There are times when it is necessary to use a covert security hidden camera.  Security Camera King offers a full range of hidden or disguised cameras, camera units that contain their own Digital Video Recorder or DVR, and high-quality low visibility powered microphones.

What exactly is a covert security hidden camera?  It’s actually nothing more than a camera that captures digital video and audio (depending on the model) without the knowledge of the subject being recorded.  The camera can be a standard sized digital video camera or it can be a very small disguised camera like our Phillips screw-head camera.

There are basically two key factors in finding a good covert security hidden camera.  The first is that the camera must be able to function without detection from casual subjects.  In other words it needs to be hidden or disguised so well that it avoids being detected by anyone that is being recorded.  Security Camera King offers a button camera, a camera that looks just like a button that can be worn by the user.  This is a perfect example of a camera that can function without detection from casual subjects.

The second key factor for a good covert security hidden camera is that it must produce high quality video.  This is done by using the best camera components that can be obtained. Let’s take a few moments to review how a standard digital video camera works and compare the components of most covert security hidden cameras with them.

A covert security hidden camera is basically just any digital video camera.  The “covertness” of the camera is more or less how it is used and not necessarily what consists of its physical make-up.  However, in order to achieve the degree of “un-noticeability” or “covertness” needed to be a good covert security hidden camera there are many recent technologically improved components that have made achieving a “covert” state easier.

A digital video cameras works basically, by capturing the light that is reflected off the objects in its field of view.  The field of view is determined by the lens(es) of the camera.  In fact the lens’s sole responsibility is to capture all light reflection (the3 image) and focus it onto a very small sensor chip.

The sensor chip is usually very small either 1/4 inch square or 1/3 inch square.  There are two different types of sensory chips.  One is called a Charged Coupled Device or CCD and the other is called a Complementary Metal Oxide Semiconductor or CMOS.  Both have the ability to transfer light energy into electrical energy that can be measured and therefore create digital video footage.

After the light has been converted to electrical energy the camera, normally possessing one to several Digital Signal Processors or DSPs, routes this information through these chips in order to refine and digitize the information.  Once this data is done being processed including being transformed from analog to binary or digital form, it is sent to the DVR and or monitor where it can be stored on a memory device and viewed later, or viewed in real-time (live).

Some of the covert security hidden camera differences from the standard digital video camera include the lens.  Most miniature cameras use a wide angle 3.7mm lens.  The lens is so small it can be placed in a wide variety of items undetected.  From wall clocks, ink pens, speakers, picture frames and many more, Security

Camera King has a device for just about every occasion.  The lens is often called a “board lens” because it is permanently mounted on the circuit board of the camera.

Speaking of the circuit board, Integrated Chip or IC technology has enabled placing DSPs and other circuitry in a very small space.  If the camera is wireless for example, the circuit board will also contain the circuit for a transmitter.

Check out Security Camera King’s large selection of hidden cameras on our on-line catalog to see all of the different types of cameras available.

One last word of caution.  Each state has different laws governing the use of cameras and especially audio recorders without the subject’s knowledge.  Make sure you confirm you state’s laws before attempting to record anyone covertly.  This doesn’t mean that you can’t record improper or criminal activity but the planned, deliberate, covert recording may require special concessions on the part of the person recording.



Infrared Camera System

Thursday, September 15th, 2011

If you need security and surveillance coverage in poorly lit or no light areas, you should try using an infrared camera system.  In the following article we’ll talk about how these cameras work and what to look (out) for when purchasing a system.

Under normal daylight conditions a digital video security camera utilizes the light waves that are reflected from the objects in its field of vision.  It does this by using a lens to focus the entire image onto a sensor chip that is usually 1/4 or 1/3 of an inch square.  The sensor chips work by converting the light energy into a small electrical impulse which can be measured and therefore ultimately used to create a digital video image.

Although both chips work a little differently, each produces the same result.  The type of sensor used is usually the choice of the manufacturer.  They are normally referred to by an acronym because the names are relatively long.

One sensor is called a Charged Coupled Device or CCD and the other is called a Complementary Metal Oxide Semiconductor or CMOS.  These sensors have a lot in common even though they function differently.  However one of their common traits is that both the CCD and the CMOS inherently sense infrared waves in the near infrared spectrum.  Because of this, a regular digital video camera can also be used as an infrared camera or collectively as an infrared camera system.

Actually, in some systems, a filter is used during the daytime to prevent infrared radiation from reaching the sensor.  Sometimes extra infrared in addition to visible light exposure may result in a poor daytime image without a filter.

A typical infrared camera system also produces images that are either black and white or monochromatic.  Even though these images may not be “in color” they can still maintain the crisp, clear, high-resolution that is associated with the daytime use of the cameras.

An infrared camera system does not produce color images when working in infrared mode because it senses the near infrared spectrum.  The near infrared spectrum does not include visible light so only a monochromatic image, not a color image, is seen.  Some may consider this a disadvantage of infrared camera systems, but to many the other special features of an infrared camera far out weigh this particular feature.

One advantage of using infrared radiation in darkness is that the human eye can not see the infrared radiation (light)–but the camera can.  This feature can put the camera in a stealth mode making it very difficult to see at night, yet its picture is just as clear and detailed as if it were daylight conditions.

The near infrared light spectrum is at the lower end of the infrared scale so it generally requires artificial near infrared light to do its job.  But where does the infrared camera system get its infrared light?

Basically, of the three types of cameras box, bullet, and dome, the bullet and dome cameras may furnish their own light.  This is done by placing InfraRed Light Emitting Diodes or IR LEDs in an array around the camera lens.  Although humans can’t see this special light source, it provides enough light as to make it look like a floodlight was used to capture the video image.

Generally, the more IR LEDs that are used the longer the range of the infrared video image from the camera.  One thing to look (out) for is the IR range.  If you are interested in purchasing an infrared camera system, you need to measure the distance you want the camera to cover under IR mode.  Most cameras state this on their package in their specifications for example, “IR Range 60 feet indoors 50 feet outdoors.”

If the infrared camera system does not achieve the distance you may require, you can either purchase a camera with a longer range or purchase an “Illuminator.”  An illuminator is a series of IR LEDs that at are strong enough to shed infrared “light” up to 300 feet or more.  Illuminators often mount like cameras and use the same power requirements of a typical camera.  Once again, check the specifications of illuminator to make sure the range extension it provides meets your requirements.

If you have any additional questions about an infrared camera system, please contact one of Security Camera King’s security experts by Live Chat or telephone.  We love to help!



Video Security Systems

Tuesday, March 29th, 2011

Video security systems are fast becoming the “wave” of the future.  Not only can they document events as they occur, but with Internet technology and other electronic technology advancements, they can even act as burglar alarms and alert you when possible illegal events occur.

A basic digital video security system is a component system that consists of three major components:

1)    One to many cameras;

2)    A DVR or Digital Video Recorder; and,

3)    A monitor or monitors

The system operates in the following manner.  The digital video camera converts light energy into electrical energy which can be measured and is used to create digital video data.  This data is sent to the DVR.  As previously mentioned, the DVR is a digital video recorder, just like the hard disk drive or HDD of a personal computer.  However, in security camera systems, the DVR normally contains a processor, just like the processor in a Personal Computer or PC.

However, the processor in a DVR is a highly specialized piece of electronic circuitry.  Unlike the PC processor, the security camera DVR processor is manufactured to handle specific functions of security camera systems such as digital video file production, camera control, and recording of digital video files.  It uses a specific utility called a COmpression/DECompression or CODEC program to process the digital video file from the digital video data sent to it by the video camera.

Digital video is basically nothing more than a series of rapid digital photographs taken in rapid succession.  Typically, high quality digital video is about 30 digital photographs taken within on second, also referred to as 30 frames per second or 30 fps.  When you think of the file size from just one high quality digital photograph, you can imagine how enormous a digital video file that takes 30 fps for 24 hours could be.

That’s why the DVR’s processor uses a CODEC to create the digital video file.  It uses special programming that shrinks the size of the file without sacrificing the high quality of the image.  CODECS change from time to time as different approaches and technologies make each CODEC better and more efficient.  One of the most popular and recent CODECs is called the H.264 CODEC.

The DVR in a video security system creates, processes, and stores digital video files that can be viewed instantly (live) on monitors or stored for later viewing on monitors or for archiving.  Many DVRs also have additional storage options such as CD/DVD writers or USB Flash drive connectivity to copy portions of video to portable media.  This may be necessary to give insurance companies, police departments, as evidence, etc.

The DVR may also contain other specialized features.  One common feature of many modern DVRs is internet connectivity.  The DVR may contain its own web server technology and programming so that it may be connected to any broadband internet service and instantly become accessible anywhere in the world there is broadband internet accessibility.

Most DVR and security camera systems come in 4, 8, or 16 channels.  This means that the DVR can handle 4, 8, or 16 separate camera inputs at one time.  Security systems requiring more than 16 cameras simply use additional DVRs to expand the number of cameras needed.

Highly specialized security cameras may have highly specialized DVRs.  Portable systems, systems that are used for a small amount of time, systems that have self contained cameras and DVRs all in one unit may utilize different digital storage methods for the DVR.  For example school bus DVR and security camera systems often use a Compact Flash Card or similar portable storage medium instead of a full sized hard disk drive as the DVR.

Is a DVR necessary in a security camera system?  No, not necessarily, but a system with just a monitor and no DVR will not be able to record the video so that it may be reproduced for later use.  A baby monitor is usually a good example of this.  On the other hand, a retail store facility would not realize the full potential of protection without a DVR and security camera system.

Other DVR and video security systems’ functions pertaining to the DVR may include audio recording, various output display resolutions as well as connectors, remote control, e-mail and smartphone notification, and mouse and/or keyboard control.


IP Camera and DVR

Friday, February 4th, 2011

IP Camera and DVRIt’s been said that someday almost every electronic appliance will be tied to the Internet; so enters the IP camera and DVR. Don’t take this the wrong way, this is definitely a good thing for the digital video security and surveillance system industry. Providing digital video systems with a mechanism to connect to the Internet places the power of versatility and omnipresence in the user’s hand. But what exactly does IP mean and how do these devices work? We’ll try to answer these questions in the following article.

Let’s begin by distinguishing between the components of a digital video security camera system. First, the system must have at least one camera and if it is DVR dependent, a maximum of sixteen cameras per DVR. Speaking of which, a DVR or Digital Video Recorder, is the device that contains the hard disk drive to store the digital video files created from the data provided by the cameras. This unit contains a Digital Signal Processor or DSP the compiles the cameras’ video data and created a digital video file from it that can be stored on the DVRs hard disk drive for later use or displayed on the system’s monitor in real-time (live).

In a non-IP system, the digital video camera transmits its video data over a video transmission cable that must be run from each camera to the DVR, or wirelessly by using a built-in transmitter to send the signals via radio waves to a corresponding receiver or a DVR with a built in receiver.

However, an IP camera and DVR work a little differently. First we should define what we mean by “IP.” An IP camera and DVR are digital video component devices that are “Internet Protocol” or IP ready. This means that these devices contain the either the hardwiring or software necessary to make them compatible with and to be connected to, the Internet.

Furthermore, we should also distinguish the difference between an IP camera and DVR. An IP camera can run entirely separately, that is without the need for a DVR or it may also connect to a DVR if that is desired. In addition, an IP DVR is able to connect to the Internet, and the entire digital video security system can be run via its connection.

An IP camera has built in web server technology so that it can connect directly to the Internet. It usually does this in one of three ways either using a Cat 5 Ethernet type cable or wirelessly to a broadband wireless modem or router. Once the IP camera has established its connection to the Internet it can use the Internet as the vehicle for networking. This has one tremendously powerful implication; you can monitor and operate your IP camera from anywhere in the world there is broadband Internet access.

The IP camera can be used as just a simple monitor without recording video. The IP camera can be monitored on any computer or smartphone connected to a broadband Internet connection. Its video images can also be saved on an Internet-connected computer. Further, an IP camera can also send its video images via the Internet to a remotely located DVR that is connected to the Internet.

An IP DVR system is slightly different. In this system the DVR contains the circuitry or software to connect to the Internet. The cameras in this system normally connect directly to the DVR using conventional digital video security system methods. Once the Internet connection is established, any of the cameras connected to the DVR may be monitored or controlled via the Internet connection. Once again, the system can be controlled (including the individual cameras) anywhere in the world there is broad band Internet access.

Speaking of control, an IP camera and DVR can be controlled remotely by computer by just using a common Internet browser such as Internet Explore, Safari, etc. Smartphone devices use mini-software programs called “applications” or simply “apps.” The apps programs are downloaded to the device and installed on the device. Once installed, the device is ready to control/monitor the IP camera and DVR.

Security Camera King offers a variety of different IP cameras and DVRs. Check out our “Network IP Security Cameras” section located under the “Security Camera” bar on the left hand side of our web page. Also, each of Security Camera Kings feature DVR systems, the Elite Mini, Elite, and Ultimate are ready to be connected to the Internet “out of the box.”